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GREASE is the Word?

16 May

I’ve tried to be supportive. I’ve tried to be patient. But this morning, my Yahoo! News had a proclamation that made me wince….

Taylor Hicks to play Teen Angel in Broadway’s ‘Grease’

Now, I will preface my remarks with the statement that I am a substantiated Taylor Hicks’ fan. I think the dude has talent in spades, and I sincerely want him to prove the critics wrong and show that he’s not your average ‘idol’.

But Broadway? Really? Why? Kat McPhee, yes…Taylor, absolutely not.

I can’t help but think that this is some kind of AI commitment, because I really can’t explain it. When I think of Idols on Broadway, I think of Rueben as Fats Waller, Fantasia as Ms. Ceely, Diana DiGarmo as Penny Pingleton, Jennifer Hudson as Effie (yes, I know it was the movie version of Dreamgirls) and sadly, Clay Aiken in Spamalot.

In my narrow little mind, I simply don’t see Taylor in the same bucket. I mean, his whole appeal was as the anti-idol, stickin’ it to the man, rebel without a cause….and now he’s Teen Angel? I mean Danny Zuko or even Kinicky, but Teen Angel? So now Taylor will forever be associated with Frankie Avalon and Beauty School Drop Out?

Think about it. How is this good for his career? Will Warren Haynes, Snoop Dogg, and Keb ‘Mo be attending his debut? I don’t think so.

I cannot accept that Taylor is doing this of his own volition. Given the pipeline from Idol to Broadway, I can’t help but think that this is some kind of attempt by AI to further emasculate Taylor. Who knows exactly what’s in the original iron-clad AI contracts…Perhaps he had no other choice. In my heart of hearts, I hope that is the case, because I cannot explain how this role at this point in his career will help. All this does is further entrench him as just another idol “production” and further distance him from the street cred he so desperately needs to re-capture. Is a stint in Grease pandering to the older, nostalgic crowd? Lord, I hope he’s not that transparent.

Personally, I think small-venue tours, sporting events and private gigs are better than this “opportunity”. I love Taylor, but he’s either doing this out of servitude to a legal commitment or he’s succumbed to the lure of celebrity and the magnetic heat of the spotlight.

Either way, I’m disappointed.

Disclosure: I don’t need a history lesson on Taylor and his prowess, as I have been there since the beginning, so please…you have a right to disagree with my opinions but please keep comments on a civil level. I really DON’T want the wrath of The Soul Patrol. And, just for the record, I don’t want or need hits to my blog by mentioning Taylor. I would like to get hits to my blog for writing about The Midnight Special, however. (See previous post.)

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50 Comments

Posted by on May 16, 2008 in american idol, taylor hicks

 

50 responses to “GREASE is the Word?

  1. shrewspeaks

    May 16, 2008 at 8:36 am

    One word…

    BRANSON

     
  2. music maven

    May 16, 2008 at 8:51 am

    Well, I mean, really. There can only be three answers:

    1. He needs the money and/or is desparate for exposure.
    2. AI has him by the ‘nads and he had little choice.
    3. He’s lost his mind.

     
  3. shrewspeaks

    May 16, 2008 at 9:40 am

    The second cd must not be forth coming, seeing it would be hard to tour while on broadway. The insult to injury is…this version of Grease was born out of another reality TV series “You’re The One That We Want” so it isn’t even a real broadway show.

     
  4. music maven

    May 16, 2008 at 9:53 am

    You’re right. This is a reality show winner vehicle, so maybe that’s the tie in. It was produced by BBC Worldwide…damn Brits.

    However, there is a NO button. I swear, I’d rather see Taylor do The Mullet Toss again than this. At least it’s truer to who he really is. What happened to Charlie?

    Some people will say that this is just a “summer job” so he can be in NYC and work on his CD. With 8 shows a week, rehearsals, etc., there won’t be any time for laying down tracks in NYC. For now, it’s NOT about the music.

    If I’m proven wrong, I’ll glady do a mea culpa post.

     
  5. Amy deClouet

    May 16, 2008 at 10:19 am

    I agree MM! Although I am a HUGE Grease fan, yes I know that’s cheesy, I don’t see Taylor as “Teen Angel” In fact I didn’t even know who that character was until the youtube reference. That is an itty biity part for someone of Taylor’s stature…in my opinion.
    Perhaps this will open up future opportunities that would have never been presented to Taylor without the aid of the teen angel. Let’s hope so at least. Have a great weekend!

     
  6. somebody . . .

    May 16, 2008 at 10:29 am

    The show has gotten a great review from the NY Times. I eliminated the details to get at the heart of the matter:

    http://theater2.nytimes.com/2007/08/20/theater/reviews/20grea.html

    But there’s the numbing sense of performers of undeveloped talent conscientiously doing what they have been told to do and failing to claim their parts as their own.

    The message of this latest “Grease” is that anyone, famous or not, can star in a Broadway musical, a natural enough conclusion in the era of YouTube and “American Idol,” when the right to be a celebrity is perceived as constitutional.

    After all, the musical began life as a modest, do-it-yourself cult hit in Chicago in 1971. And unlike many youth-oriented shows, it has continued to appeal to successive generations of teenagers, including the current demographic that has turned the Disney “High School Musical” franchise into a cash machine. “Summer Nights” and “Hopelessly Devoted to You” are now karaoke staples among teenagers. (O.K., maybe not the coolest ones.) Why not a people’s “Grease” that would reflect its belonging to everyone?

    But for this sensibility to work, a theatergoer has to be personally invested in its stars’ doing well. Those who religiously watched “You’re the One That I Want” may cheer Mr. Crumm and Ms. Osnes the way high school students might root for their chums in the class play. (“Did you know she could kick like that?” “He looks so funny with that pompadour.”)

    Those who come to “Grease” without such sentimental attachments are sure to be baffled by the lack of wit, charisma or original presence on the stage. Given the choice between slick soullessness and rough-edged sincerity, I’ll take the latter any day.

    DD – are you voting for “rough-edged sincerity”? Is this communist Russia?

     
  7. music maven

    May 16, 2008 at 10:34 am

    Ames,
    I’m a HUGE Grease fan, too. Love it. But this is a cheesefest of cheesefest. A musical production created by reality show producers who chose Danny and Sandy via an Idol type contest.

    It is itty bitty and likely isn’t but about 10 minutes on stage, tops. It ties him, inappropriately, to a Frankie Avalon type and justifies the critics who say he only appeals to old women.

    I see Taylor as a raw, electric performer. When I hear Ain’t No Sunshine or People Get Ready or even The Right Place, there’s something there that’s powerful and soulful. Juxtaposed against Beauty School Drop-out, I just don’t see what kind of real opportunities this part will bring to legitimize Taylor as a relevant musical artist in today’s music scene.

    I’m hoping for the best, as well, and really hope I get to do that mea culpa post. Hope you and Mike (and Stella & Bernie) have a great weekend too.

    Much love.

     
  8. music maven

    May 16, 2008 at 11:18 am

    Gawd, Somebody, if it’s slick soullessness, then I will truly lose faith in this world.

    So, the play is that all the Soul Patrollers will cram the theater to cheer on their man? 64 performances is a lot of cheese to sit through. Imagine if you had to sing Beauty School Drop Out 64 times in 64 days…Like Amy, I’m a Grease-a-holic, but only of the Travolta/Newton-John kind.

    I guess I just saw Taylor differently. I have never seen him in the normal fame-whore vaccuum that the Idol franchise creates. I honestly thought that he’d seriously go against the grain and either change the world or die trying. But now, it seems that he has capitulated.

    I guess assimilation isn’t reserved for the “everyday soldier”, huh? EVERYBODY compromises. Following Stephen Buntrock as Teen Angel just seems overboard. Perhaps Taylor is actually a better actor than I’ve given him credit for.

     
  9. shrewspeaks

    May 16, 2008 at 11:20 am

    I can’t help but keep churning it over and over…

    “This move is so not about the music”

     
  10. somebody . . .

    May 16, 2008 at 11:38 am

    Option One:
    Summer fling, don’t mean a thing

    Option Two:
    It turned colder – that’s where it ends

    Option Three:
    your futures so unclear now
    what’s left of your career now

    Lyrics anyone?

     
  11. Ghost of Taylor past

    May 16, 2008 at 12:03 pm

    He HAS to do this. He was losing his celebrity and was afraid that he wouldn’t be invited to anymore celebrity golf tournaments.

    Ya gotta do what ya gotta do.

     
  12. music maven

    May 16, 2008 at 12:10 pm

    My head is saying “fool, forget him”,
    my heart is saying “don’t let go”

    Summer dreams ripped at the seams,

    Baby don’t blow it, don’t put my good advice to shame
    Baby you know it, even Dear Abby’s say the same

    There ain’t no danger we can go too far
    We start believin’ now that we can be who we are

     
  13. music maven

    May 16, 2008 at 12:34 pm

    Hell, Ghost, if he wanted more celebrity, start dating Taylor Swift or something. And he actually cancelled out of a Pro-Am to make his announcement on the Today show today.

     
  14. somebody . . .

    May 16, 2008 at 12:45 pm

    Is Taylor Swift available? Just checking . . .

     
  15. huckleberryfriend

    May 16, 2008 at 3:05 pm

    Possible scenario.

    Taylor wins AI5, cuts an album, goes on tour, banks a cool million dollars. If invested wisely, he can play his kind of music the rest of his life and not have to worry about money.

    So why not try some new things? Take a small part in a play to see how he likes it and if he is any good at it. No harm – no foul. He finishes up his album and goes back out on tour. Sounds like a great life to me.

     
  16. music maven

    May 16, 2008 at 4:40 pm

    Huck — I hear you, but a cool million goes fast, particularly for 31 year old. At this point in his career he must choose wisely if he wants longevity in the biz. I just think that this wasn’t the production. Rent, Hair, Jesus Christ Superstar…possibly.

    I guess in my mind, Taylor was never the Broadway show guy. Just like I don’t see David Cook or Chris Daughtry or Bo Bice as Broadway guys. I see Clay and David Archuletta and most of the girls, but not Taylor.

    Maybe some of you will attend and convince me that this was a brilliant move.

     
  17. huckleberryfriend

    May 16, 2008 at 6:29 pm

    I’m thinking it might have something to do with jamming with musicians in NY. Doesn’t your Mrs. Taylor Hicks live in NY? Or he might be doing it just for the fun of it with no real career goal in mind.

     
  18. music maven

    May 16, 2008 at 6:47 pm

    Ah yes, would be nice to have Taylor jammin’ with Norah and Company or maybe, my buddy Johnny Mayer. But Mayer’s going on tour this summer.

    Perhaps I need to get Cajun Boy down to the theater to give me a report. And, I know Shrew is just across the rivah….

    While I think you might have a point, Taylor isn’t at a point in his career yet where he can do things without a career goal in mind. I sure hope that he at least has a good time while he’s up there.

     
  19. jenfera

    May 16, 2008 at 8:27 pm

    I can’t figure out what to make of this. Maybe he is really just that cheezy. I do think this announcement is better than some possible alternatives. Signing up for a season of the Surreal Life. Dating Pam Anderson. Selling a line of men’s hair care.

    That’s one of my all time favorite picture of him, by the way.

     
  20. Linda T

    May 16, 2008 at 11:48 pm

    This is my first post on your blog, though I enjoy reading it (loved the NOLA Jazz Festival stuff — oustanding).

    I just want to say thank you for revealing this for the head-scratcher that it is. I feel like all the times I tried to “convince” others that Taylor was so much more than the cheesy goofball that they saw on AI are all for naught. Quite frankly, it’s depressing.

    Everyone says he’s doing this to keep in the public eye or to build a new audience. Ummm, isn’t it possible to build an audience by making oustanding, critically acclaimed music? Is he really that broke? Am I missing something here?

     
  21. music maven

    May 17, 2008 at 7:25 am

    I read something peripherally that Taylor recently said something about fulfilling an AI commitment which many took as an appearance on the finals of AI. Perhaps, this is the AI commitment he was speaking of.

    I just can’t see Taylor making this move. Even if it’s just for fun, there’s other acting jobs that I’m sure he could have pursued, both movies and Broadway. The Reality TV angle on this alone should have caused him to hit the NO button.

    No, I don’t think Taylor is broke. At all. He lives modestly with little expense and he made a nice payback on his tour, book deal and AI after-activities, so I highly doubt this is about money. Last I heard, Broadway pay wasn’t all that great — particularly for such a peripheral part.

    Perhaps one day, we will understand the path and the reasons behind it. For me, Taylor’s enthusiasm for this part is reminiscent of his debut CD. Now, he says that he’ll have “artistic freedom” and he’s free of the label overbearance, so evidently everything wasn’t as rosy as he painted it back then. I suspect this is the same situation, yet Taylor IS evidently quite a good actor as he talks a good game about his new opportunity.

     
  22. AH

    May 18, 2008 at 3:05 am

    After having a temper tantrum/melt down over this I withdrew much as I did when GC shut down – there was a similar sense of loss. I keep getting PMs asking me why I haven’t said anything and what do I think. I think most of them don’t really want to know that – they want to feel good about it and they don’t want to examine the long range issues.
    ———————————–
    “Maybe some of you will attend and convince me that this was a brilliant move.”
    ———————————–
    Some people I truly like and have been to a lot of concerts with are making plans and god help me I may join in – because of them – not because I have any interest in seeing Taylor in that role. If I do suck it up and go I will report my thoughts.

    Seeing LindaT here has reminded me again of why this is so sad. I sat beside her that incredible night in Cohasset last June when Taylor created magic on a little revolving stage in the middle of an old “revival” tent.

    Am desperately hoping THAT Taylor Hicks still exists and that there is a good reason for this experiment – maybe as simple as reminding the media he is still around before new music is released ?
    Also hoping people like Warren Haynes and Robert Randolph will still welcome him with a B’way credit attached to his name.
    And that he blows us away with an incredible album in the fall.
    I’m patient – but after this announcement it would be nice to have a snippet of a new song as an incentive to remain so.

    Thanks for not disappointing MM – and for a place where it’s okay to make a post that isn’t dripping with rainbow kittens and chocolate puppies.

    This version of the song did make me feel a tiny bit better – have only embedded the boxes before – hope this link works.
    http://www.box.net/shared/yrvbv0jwo8

     
  23. tandjam

    May 18, 2008 at 12:26 pm

    Well, my first reaction to this news was “WTF???? NOooooo!”

    And then, after a little time it was “wtf?”

    And then I thought, “Yeah, he likes to ham it up on stage and play to big crowds and just generally perform. So I can see were he might want to try out this Broadway thing…as someone mentioned, it is a great opportunity…a great experience…(If somebody gave me the chance, I sure wouldn’t pass it up!) …so…yeah I can see why he might want to do a little Broadway stint.

    Lots of non-Broadway types have taken rolls on Broadway. Some have wowed audiences and reviewers, and some have not. If he must do this, I hope Taylor wows everybody.

    The news did kind of make me adjust my image of him a bit. As a fan who favors ‘bar Taylor’ and ‘acoustic Taylor’ it’s been a weird couple days for me. But I think I’m beginning to accept it and even be ok with it.

     
  24. brc

    May 18, 2008 at 5:56 pm

    I’m totally baffled about this gig. Like Linda T, I have been trying to play Taylor up to many of my skeptical friends. Two of them sent me e-mails today basically laughing their asses off at how cheesy this is.

    Here I was thinking that soon we’d be hearing about an acoustic album and tour. This blows.

     
  25. brc

    May 18, 2008 at 6:08 pm

    He can’t be doing this for the money…

    The actor’s equity minimum on Broadway is around $1,500/week which would net $18,000 for the 12 week run.

    Julia Roberts made $35,000/week for her show last year. If he made this much (which is highly unlikely given the size of the part and the power of his draw) it would be around $420,000.

    Just don’t get it.

     
  26. shrewspeaks

    May 18, 2008 at 7:18 pm

    Two cents on the broadway thang…if he were up there in Bus Stop or The Rainmaker and showed the world he has acting chops that is a smart career move…But to be a cameo in a broadway show that at best is a reality show bit itself…yeah, I am NOT buying it.

    Desperate.

     
  27. brc

    May 18, 2008 at 8:34 pm

    But why does someone who clearly has a talent for singing need to show that he has acting chops? I feel like it just further dilutes whatever “brand equity” the guy had. It started when the whole GC thing fell apart and his brand presence was left to the dueling th.com/thhq.com websites and the pathetic MySpace page. This just comes out of left field.

    Maybe he can send the fan club little “teen angel” necklaces and postcards in exchange for their $29.95 🙂

    I agree… desperate.

     
  28. music maven

    May 18, 2008 at 9:31 pm

    I learned a long time ago that if things just don’t add up, they don’t add up.

    In other words, this move just makes no sense for Taylor, so there’s got to be another explanation. While I think Taylor likes his new-found celebrity after years of toil and trouble, I don’t think that he’s doing this for the celebrity. If he wanted that, he could date Kelli Pickler or Carrie Underwood.

    Also, I don’t think he needs money. His lifestyle is modest and not requiring gobs of money. We all know that he made denero on his independent CD sales, his concert tour and merchandise, so I think that’s the rationale.

    The only thing that’s left is a legal commitment, which is why I go back to the original AI contract or his “winner’s contract”…

    If you look at Taylor’s role models — Ray Charles, Otis Redding, Van Morrison — those guys never did Broadway nor had the inclination. So, the Broadway thing just doesn’t add up. Now, if he would have gone the movie route, I might have seen that.

    I still think that there is more to the story than we know. Perhaps one day somebody will blow the lid off of Idol and Taylor will be able to tell the real story of his dance with the devil.

     
  29. Colette

    May 19, 2008 at 2:08 am

    MM:

    I think it may just be a matter of trying something he hasn’t done. It’s a fairly easy gig, in the sense that he has one big number and that’s it. Being on Broadway is a huge rush, he may have wanted to try his hand at acting, and if he’s making a record in NYC he’ll have most of his days free to be in the studio.

    I doubt there’s anything in his AI contract that would force him to do a Broadway show. Broadway producers just came up with a smart gimmick, by casting former Idol contestants in splashy musicals aimed at young audiences.

    I do share your feeling that this may not quite be up the guy’s alley. But he has struggled to find his footing since winning Idol. That mediocre album set him back a lot, and the many Taylor naysayers probably feel it proved them right. I don’t know how one carves out a career that’s more in the Ray Charles or Van Morrison mold, if you’re living in 2008 and came to stardom via a huge commercial pop enterprise.

    But it can’t be easy, and maybe Taylor just wants to make some quick change and have an adventure while finishing his (hopefully much better) album. Sound possible?

     
  30. music maven

    May 19, 2008 at 7:11 am

    Anything’s possible. I know that I must sound unsupportive and I’m absolutely not, however…why THIS production — a reality TV vehicle and a role that provides another opportunity for mockery. I get that it’s fun, it’s not demanding, it’s an opportunity to live in NYC while presumably working on his CD, but I have to say that it’s just not smart.

    It gives critics affirmation that he’s not a serious contemporary artist. Even if he succeeds in his Teen Angel part, they will say that it’s because he’s at home with music, and fans, of the ’50s.

    If the lure was doing something he hasn’t done, pick a show that has a little more credibility, or lobby for a movie part.

    Or, how about locking yourself in a studio and creating a kick ass CD and then independently releasing it via unconventional means with a full tour. How about creating a music festival in lower Alabama that features up and coming artists like Grace Potter, etc.? How about setting up webcast concerts in historic venues an charging $25 a pop to access?

    There are a lot of ways to be a pioneer and I just don’t buy that playing the small role of Teen Angel in a mediocre production is the best way to accomplish that goal.

    A career more in the vein of Ray or Van would mean focusing on writing good songs, playing with other great artists, creating long-lasting CDs and touring them — focusing on the MUSIC.

     
  31. Linda T

    May 19, 2008 at 9:47 am

    MM said, “It gives critics affirmation that he’s not a serious contemporary artist”.

    I could not agree with this more — and that statement pertains not only to critics, but to theater-goers as well. I hardly believe that audience members who may be wowed by a Teen Angel descending to the stage in a giant ice cream cone all dressed in white will make the mental leap and think to themselves, “wow, I bet he can really sing some soulful blues music”.

    I also have to say that if I hear that he throws a Ray Charles backbend move or a “woo” or a “soul patrol” into this role in any way, shape or form, then I’m outta here, perhaps for good.

     
  32. AH

    May 19, 2008 at 10:23 am

    MM – standing ovation.

    Agree – if you want to be a working musician then pass on the celeb appearances and get out there and work.
    And you touched on something else that bothers me – the idea that you have to be thrilled about this or you aren’t a “good” fan. What I’m seeing in the private conversations that are going on is honest concern that what people – maybe even Taylor – see as a fun little diverson will make it much harder for him to establish himself as a serious musican. I haven’t seen anyone running out the door over this – most are willing to wait and see what the new album offers.
    The irony of the announcement coming on the heels of the set by Taylor, Brian Less and Jeff Lopez that came out of a charity event held on a Birmingham horse farm the weekend before is just another twist in this Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride. If nothing else being a fan has seldom been boring.

     
  33. Colette

    May 19, 2008 at 10:23 am

    As much as I enjoyed Taylor’s run, and I did (I wasn’t much interested in Idol before it), I think he’s not the great next blue-eyed soul giant some of us had hoped for.

    What you say, MM about “focusing on writing good songs, playing with other great artists, etc….” is entirely true. This is one reason I am rooting for David Cook — as attractive a stage performer as he’s become, thanks in part to the AI machine’s tutelage, he’s all about the music.

    Listening to his “Analog Heart” album, ironically, I don’t find him anywhere NEAR the songwriter Taylor is.

    But Taylor’s also something of a showboater, which worked wonderfully on the TV screen because he really generated so much heat and light. When I saw him perform in person, on his tour, he was also fun and dynamic. But it was partly at the expense of making good music. He really played to the crowd, yet didn’t quite connect in a deep way musically.

    I know some Soul Patrol folk may find this heretical, but I’m not sure yet whether Taylor has the musical goods or wants to put them front and center. He’s got a great whisky voice, and he loves a lot of the same music I do. But there’s a streak of the carny performer in him too. That’s the part that may really enjoy and fit this particular Broadway role — as opposed to the smoothie lawyer role Usher played in the show “Chicago,” which won him nothing but kudos, and showed his versatility. Or for that matter, the role J Hudson played to the hilt in the “Dreamgirls” movie.

    Perhaps we just have to accept, until further evidence is submitted, that Taylor does not want to be (or is incapable of being) the musician we saw in him. Maybe we gotta let go, as disappointing as that may be!

     
  34. music maven

    May 19, 2008 at 10:28 am

    LOL, Linda. I don’t get that whole deal either.

     
  35. music maven

    May 19, 2008 at 11:28 am

    Colette, excellent point. I think that Taylor has not truly embraced who he is musically. Much like his ADD personality, he jumps around from one thing to another never truly finishing anything…part of why his on-line strategy blew up, I think. AI was highly structured which forced him to follow the process and complete the process.

    Most ADD sufferers are easily fragmented and are attracted to the next shiny thing rather than sticking to “the plan”. Maybe Taylor needs some Ritalin.

    I guess I am a planner. I have to know where I’m going and always have a long-term and short-term plan and then work the plan. Jumping from one thing to another with no seeming end game REALLY makes me nuts….that and the Ray backbend.

     
  36. Colette

    May 19, 2008 at 1:24 pm

    He has ADD?? Didn’t know that….

     
  37. AH

    May 19, 2008 at 6:02 pm

    Maven please delete this if you’d rather not have the link here – no problem.

    I mentioned the odd juxtaposition of Taylor doing the kind of music we expect from him on the 10th and then getting the Teen Angel news not even a week later.
    I created a jukebox so people who don’t care to download files can listen whenever they like. This link is to an open board so no registration needed if anyone here would like to have a listen as well.
    http://newenglandsoulpatrol.org/mybb/showthread.php?tid=2343

     
  38. music maven

    May 20, 2008 at 7:30 am

    See, AH, THAT along side of the Teen Angel announcement just doesn’t add up. If I could do that, it would be all I’d do all over the place. It’s a crazy thing, but it seems that Taylor hides this kind of stuff from the greater world at large and it’s what people genuinely like about him.

    Here’s my parting shot of wisdom. When you are true to yourself, you are generally accepted. When you try to be something you are not for the sake of propriety, assimilation or other unrelated gains, it just doesn’t work. People don’t “buy it”. Perhaps the CD didn’t resonate because it’s not really who Taylor is. For the life of me, I just don’t get why he doesn’t do what he does well. If he’s unsure, start with a live CD of this kind of stuff.

    Thanks for linking.

     
  39. thedingoateyobaby

    May 20, 2008 at 3:40 pm

    Two words….

    I’m
    Horrified.

     
  40. caryl

    May 23, 2008 at 9:58 pm

    Thank you!!!

    I’m posting a link to this on my blog. Hope that’s OK.

     
  41. henry8

    May 26, 2008 at 12:51 am

    well, I know I am in the minority here, but its just beyond me why he can’t do both, be good at both and I can’t enjoy him at both. I love him singing Ain’t No Sunshine and I see no reason why I can’t love this in a different way.
    If it is an attempt to emasculate him, it ain’t gonna work.
    If AI itself didn’t do it, this won’t.

     
  42. music maven

    May 26, 2008 at 10:20 am

    Sorry, Henry, but at some point you have to draw the line and say, “Nope. Not a good idea.”

    I still like Taylor and his music, but I won’t deny that I am disappointed in the choice of this role. And, I just do not accept this is something that Taylor sought out and considers such a “great opportunity”.

    I don’t begrudge those who will enjoy Taylor all dressed in white, riding an ice cream cone and singing the critically acclaimed “Beauty School Drop-out”, but I just happen to think that yes, it is beneath him. As an American Idol, as a bar singer, as a man…

     
  43. henry8

    May 26, 2008 at 5:15 pm

    Well, not that it is important but I have my doubts about the ice cream cone since every teen angel usually does it his way. But who knows?
    Beneath him?? That I don’t get. He not the King of England or high society. Hes not even the king of the blues singers. IMO no entertainer worth his salt considers any good role beneath him. And this is a good role. Maybe it isn’t something hes always wanted to do, I can’t read his mind. But he slapped on a white hat and entertained in a biker bar at 15 or so. I have seen him dancing in boas and heard tell of him doing a Gene Kelly imitation. He a damn good entertainer and I really don’t think any good entertainer would think this role was “beneath them” I’m sure many of the people who have performed this part would be very surprised to hear that. One thing Taylor is not is a snob.

     
  44. music maven

    May 26, 2008 at 5:37 pm

    You’re right. This is the perfect roll for Taylor at this point in his career. Wouldn’t want him to be picky (or a snob) about what he does. Having said that, why doesn’t he go back and play some gigs for pennies in Birmingham or South Alabama….or maybe a couple of weddings. Hell, I’ve offered up my back yard a couple of times. I’d even feed him.

    No, Taylor is the King of Nothing, but he has earned some stature by winning AI and by working his ass off to gain some respect. IMO, this is not a role that moves him forward. I’m sure he’ll be great, though.

     
  45. henry8

    May 26, 2008 at 7:42 pm

    Nope, hes not going back to anything that pays pennies. Not if he can help it anyway. And he seems to be developing a fair reputation for doing corporate gigs so he shouldn’t have to. I do think he will be great at it and for me, from the little I know, it won’t cause him to lose respect from other entertainers. But I could be wrong, time will tell I guess, and it all depends on how his paticular performance is received. I hope I get to see it.

     
  46. Girlitalia

    June 18, 2008 at 6:16 am

    I am the biggest Taylor fan EVER! I am, I follow, I write, I had meet/greet/ met him a couple times, love him, think of him every day. I thought this would be great too. Yes, I think he’s adorable from youtube videos etc. However, when I saw him on Regis and Kelly; I had a soft spot and actually “felt” for him. In my eyes, he’s adorable anyway but I felt like, the costume, makeup,hair, why?? What did he do this for? IS it the smart choice when he is SO talented (not everyone knows this either)? I am just afraid it was a huge bad move. Love comment on lyrics. lol

     
  47. hicksaholic

    July 15, 2008 at 4:11 pm

    I was somewhat unsure about the wisdom of Taylor taking this role like most have commented. But he is getting excellent reviews and lots of positive press. He has gotten back in the spotlight- at least in NYC. This has to be good don’t you think? I doubt this opportunity was the one Taylor really wanted to get back in front of the public again but it was the one he got. I heard Taylor was making very good money(supposedly somewhere between $100000 and $300000) for this small part. And having time to recrd
    I do agree with the ADD comment. I often wonder if Taylor is so scared to go back to being nobody that he figures he better leave no stone unturned as far as his career goes.
    That being said I hope this latest move is just part of the long winding road to more great music.
    I don’t know if I could put myself in his position. I’m guessing it would be almost as hard or perhaps even harder to zoom to the top like he did right after AI and then zoom back down due to the (supposed) poor cd sales and the constant ragging by the media.
    I would love for Taylor to put out a sequel to his book. I am betting it would be interesting.
    I was proud of him recently for defending his post AI cd saying he was proud of it, just wished he had had more time to record it. If you see him do the songs live they are very good IMO.(sorry, dingo, I know you don’t agree but then you haven’t seen him live I don’t think)

     
  48. music maven

    July 16, 2008 at 7:39 am

    glad you commented. I need to revisit this topic and do a mea culpa, of sorts. I still don’t see Grease as a good thing for a touring recording artist and I think it solidly puts him in the AI mold,BUT I can’t deny that he’s received positive feedback and attention from the roll. Given the past coverage by the media and critics, I was sure that he was going to be eviscerated and that this was going to be a major nail in his career coffin.

    Glad that I was wrong, on that point, but it has left me scratching my head. I mean, I’ve seen the Teen Angel performance via video. It’s ok, but it’s not Jennifer Holiday in Dreamgirls or anything.

    More to come….

     
  49. hicksaholic

    July 16, 2008 at 10:30 am

    music maven
    I sent you a PM on the Boogie

     

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